Santander float unlikely in 2013

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Santander’s UK arm yesterday said a stock market flotation was unlikely until next year or 2015 as it reported a dip in annual profits.

The Spanish bank was forced to shelve plans to float the UK unit in 2011 amid market volatility and uncertainty over the Independent Banking Commission’s recommendations to overhaul the sector.

Steve Pateman, head of UK banking, confirmed the group’s aims to debut on the London market remained on track, but would go ahead once it had improved its balance sheet and further bolstered its corporate business.

Pre-tax profits dropped 34 per cent year-on-year in the final quarter, leaving overall annual profits 2 per cent lower at £1.23 billion.